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How to Reduce the Risk of Breast Cancer in the Senior Years

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Even though seniors have no control over some breast cancer risk factors, there are quite a few habits they can change to lower the odds of developing this pervasive disease. Seniors should do everything in their power to boost their immune systems so they can fight off cancerous and precancerous cells. Here are a few specific steps older women can take to reduce their risk of breast cancer and many other diseases. 

Stop Smoking

Smoking is an extremely unhealthy habit, and the chemicals found in cigarettes can affect much more than the heart and lungs. Long-term smoking habits have been linked to over 15 types of cancer, including breast cancer. Senior women who are having difficulty quitting might want to consider alternative treatments such as acupuncture and meditation to curb their cravings. Quitting smoking is one of the best ways to enhance quality of life and reduce the risk of many different medical conditions.

If you have a senior loved one who needs help maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Home Care Assistance, an in-home care provider Vancouver families can rely on. All of our caregivers are bonded, licensed, and insured, there are no hidden fees, and we never ask our clients to sign long-term contracts.

Limit Postmenopausal Hormone Treatments

Over the last few decades, hormone patches and injections have been used to treat a variety of diseases, including osteoporosis, arthritis, and heart conditions. Hormone replacement therapy is also used to minimize hot flashes and mood swings during menopause. These treatments have been effective in some situations, but they produced several unwanted side effects as well. Both estrogen and progestin injections have been linked to much higher rates of breast cancer. 

Reduce Alcohol Intake

The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation claims breast cancer rates are much higher among women who drink alcohol daily. Alcohol is a known carcinogen, and having just one drink a day can increase a woman’s risk of breast cancer by as much as 13 percent. Older women should keep track of how often they consume alcohol to see if they need to make any lifestyle changes. Red wine is generally considered to be the healthiest alcoholic beverage, but seniors shouldn’t have more than a few glasses every week. 

Exercise More Often

A study funded by the Women’s Health Initiative found that exercising for two hours a week can reduce a woman’s risk of breast cancer by around 18 percent. Instead of trying to cram a large amount of training into a single day, senior women should attempt to spread it out over five or six days. Low-impact exercises and movements like brisk walking and swimming are great options for women who have mobility or balance issues. 

Senior women who need assistance with exercises or managing daily activities should consider professional in-home care. Whether your elderly loved one needs part-time assistance with basic household chores or you need a break from your caregiving duties, the Vancouver respite care experts at Home Care Assistance are here to help. All of our respite care services are backed with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we never ask our clients to sign long-term contracts.

Maintain a Healthy Weight

Following menopause, the vast majority of estrogen a woman produces comes from her fatty tissue. This is one of the reasons women who have more fatty tissue also have much higher rates of breast cancer. High insulin levels are another risk factor for cancer, and obese women tend to have difficulty producing and regulating insulin. Losing just one or two pounds a month can reduce the risk of breast cancer and enhance many other facets of a senior woman’s health.

Aging adults can face a variety of challenges, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home care. Though you may be researching multiple home care agencies, Vancouver, British Columbia, Home Care Assistance has much to offer your family and your elderly loved one. We are leaders in the senior home care industry, offering proprietary programs like our holistic Balanced Care Method and around-the-clock assistance from reliable, experienced caregivers. Trust in Home Care Assistance to help your loved one enjoy a happier and healthier life in the golden years. To schedule a free in-home consultation, call us at (778) 279-3634 today.